2012/2013 Season

Due to the loss of both my parents around the 2012 holiday season, the 2012/13 season saw many fewer training miles than normal. As a result, it was a season where we tried our best to balance the needs for the future with the possibilities for the present. We downsized the kennel by finding homes for 14 dogs, while adding 9 puppies to the rebuilding effort. Given the much smaller than normal team, we focused the racing season on fun and local sprint races, placing 3rd at Conconully and 4th at the Cascade Quest. Then we started right away on training the puppies for next season in the hopes that we will have enough of the team rebuilt to ease our way back into distance racing, possibly by participating in the Stage Stop in Wyoming.

2010/2011 Season

The 2010/2011 Season did not progress as planned, pretty much in any way. This season saw a greater number of dogs than normal not able to make the team and my original plan of competing in the Beargrease was pretty much squelched by November. But we persevered through training anyway hoping things would turn around. They never did, so for the first time in a very long time, we raced in some 6-dog sprint/mid-distance stage races, placing 2nd at Conconully here in Washington and 3rd at Frog Lake in Oregon. Additionally, for the second time in three years we participated in the Cascade Quest as a Race Marshal, which was a fun change of pace, albeit a little weird and uncomfortable not being on the runners. We did manage to get some fun in at the end of the season with sun and relaxation.

2009/2010 Season

Sled dog racing is about many things, but one constant about it is the need to endure hardship and overcome obstacles. And our 2009/2010 season was highlighted by some pretty big ones – me and my dog team enduring hardship and overcoming obstacles in completing the Iditarod, and – far bigger – my partner, Stacey, enduring and overcoming cancer; at the same time. The strength of those surrounding me was awe-inspiring.

The Iditarod itself didn’t go as well as expected, primarily due to my entire team getting sick. I’m sure their ailments were at least partly due to the extreme cold that encompassed the race starting on about day 3. Nevertheless, the race was an amazing experience – one difficult to adequately describe with words, but I’ll try: obstacles, exhaustion, hardship, struggle, happiness, wonderment, loneliness, depression, dejection, bitter cold, warming sun, snow, ice, gravel, sand, water, wind, mountains, rivers, beauty, endlessness, fear, camaraderie, sick dogs, strong dogs, amazing dogs, tired dogs, tireless dogs, fun, pain, misery...indescribable joy.

Before the Iditarod we ran the Seeley 200, finishing 6th among some great competitors. So, the 2009/2010 season was difficult and full of hardship, yet a triumphant one for Stacey, my dog team, and me as we all completed the hardest races of our lives.

2008/2009 Season

The 2008/2009 season was a frustrating one, but it ended on a real high note – finishing 3rd in the 300 mile Race to the Sky in Montana, and only 12 minutes out of second place!!! Prior to that, though, the season was highlighted by the first snowfall coming about three weeks later than normal, thus delaying and shortening our sled training, our first planned race (the Seeley 200 in Montana) being cancelled due to weather and avalanche danger, and the decision to withdraw from our second planned race (the Beargrease in Minnesota) primarily for financial considerations. This last one was a tough decision, but the race was going to cost about as much as my entry fee for the 2010 Iditarod and I felt like prioritizing my main goal – the Iditarod – was a good decision in the end. So, it ended up being a short race season. And while the season didn’t evolve as originally planned, there were many events and occurrences during the year that I learned from greatly, and the season ended very well indeed. With this, my team and I will be even better and more competitive next year!!! Watch out!

2007/2008 Season

The goal for the 2007/2008 season was to run as many lower-48 races as possible in a competitive fashion and begin my team-building and qualifying for another attempt at the Iditarod in 2010. Essentially, my theme this season was "moving to the front of the pack"; and that we did -- we finished 6th at the Seeley 200 in Montana among some serious competition, and finished 6th at the Race to the Sky in Montana among different but equally good competition. At the 400-mile Beargrease in Minnesota we weren't quite as successful, scratching at mile 260. Nevertheless, overall we had a great and successful season moving to the front of the pack.

2006/2007 Season

The 2006/2007 season had some real emotional highs and lows. This was my rookie Iditarod year. After a successful 200-mile Cascade Quest where we finished 2nd, we headed to Alaska to acclimate and train the dogs for our 1,100 mile journey from Anchorage to Nome. But that journey was cut short by a severe ground blizzard at Rainy Pass, where I lost the trail, struggled for 5 hours to find it again, and returned to the Rainy Pass checkpoint with 8 frostbitten fingers – a handicap that caused me to scratch from the race. But the month of training in Alaska for the race was one of the best months of my life, and, despite only making it to Rainy Pass, my experience on the Iditarod taught me some invaluable things about running the race next time.